Wednesday was mostly a travel day—going from Tucson to Flagstaff. Before I left the Tucson area, though, I decided to visit Biosphere 2. This was a structure built in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s for conducting ecological experiments in a man-made closed system. In its first mission, which began in 1991, eight people were locked inside with the goal of living for two years in an almost completely self-sustaining environment. While there were a variety of challenges with this mission, it met its duration goal by lasting for two years and twenty minutes.
Today, Biosphere 2 is a science laboratory run by the University of Arizona. I found the tour fascinating, not only for its reflection on the original Biosphere missions, but also for its glimpse into current, ongoing research at the facility.